Cape to publish 'mesmeric' new novel from Michael Ondaatje

Cape to publish 'mesmeric' new novel from Michael Ondaatje

Jonathan Cape is publishing a new novel from Booker Prize-winning author Michael Ondaatje, his first since 2011’s The Cat’s Table (Vintage), in May 2018.

Warlight, set in 1945 London, will be "a vivid, thrilling novel of violence and love, intrigue and desire", according to Cape.

With London still reeling from the Blitz, 14-year-old Nathaniel and his sister, Rachel, are apparently abandoned by their parents, left in the care of an enigmatic figure named The Moth. They suspect he might be a criminal, and grow both more convinced and less concerned as they get to know his eccentric crew of friends: men and women with a shared history, all of whom seem determined now to protect, and educate (in rather unusual ways) Rachel and Nathaniel. The question is, are they really what and who they claim to be? A dozen years later, Nathaniel begins to uncover all he didn’t know or understand in that time.

Associate publisher Robin Robertson bought exclusive UK, British Commonwealth (including Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and India), Europe and non-exclusive throughout the rest of the world (except the US and Canada) rights from Ellen Levine at Trident Media Group.

Robertson said: "We’re enormously excited to be publishing Michael Ondaatje’s magisterial Warlight: a rich, dream-like, mesmeric novel that holds within it many different stories – a novel that is also a book of secrets, revealing themselves one by one till the very last page."

Ondaatje, whose book The English Patient won the Booker Prize and was adapted into a Oscar-winning film, is the author of several novels, as well as a memoir, a nonfiction book on film, and several books of poetry.